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Healthy Weight Center

Am I Overweight?

03/11/2009

Question:

I am 12 years old and weigh 110 pounds. I probably am 5`1, so am I overweight?

Answer:

To judge whether or not you are at a healthy weight, health professionals' not only look at the scale but also use a growth chart. This chart compares your growth in height and weight over time (from birth). If you have consistently followed the same growth curve from birth, you are in a healthy range for your body type.

Another tool we use is the body mass index or BMI (an estimate used to determine if a person may be at health risk due to their weight). In children, a BMI under the 5th percentile or over the 85th percentile indicates health concern. Since you stated that your height is 5'1" and you weigh 110 lbs., I calculated your BMI using a pediatric BMI calculator. It calculated your BMI to be 20.8 (79th percentile) which is considered a healthy weight.

So, if you still think that you may be overweight for your body type it would be helpful to have your parents take you to see the doctor for an evaluation; then it would be a good idea to see a dietitian for some individual help. Your diet and exercise patterns would need to be evaluated. You (along with your parents and a dietitian) will need to make sure that you take in enough calories to support your continuing growth and ensure that you are getting the proper nutrients you need (including protein, iron, and calcium for development of bone and lean tissue).

For help on what makes up a well balanced diet, visit the ChooseMyPlate.gov website and choose "SuperTracker" where you can tailor a diet to meet your needs according to your age, gender, and activity level.

I hope this helps put things into perspective for you. Please be sure to speak to your parents and doctor about any further concerns. Good luck!

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Response by:

Jane   Korsberg, MS, RD, LD Jane Korsberg, MS, RD, LD
Senior Instructor of Nutrition
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University